Summary: A look at why Jesus came in the way that He did.
A daughter came home from college for Christmas and was in the process of helping her mother get ready for Christmas dinner. For as long as they can remember, her mother, and her grandmother before her, had always prepared a roast. Now, there was one thing that puzzled the daughter. Every year, her mother would cut off the ends of the roast before putting it in the pan. This year, she got up the courage and asked, “Mom, why do you cut off the ends of the roast?” “Well,” her mother replied, “I always helped your grandmother with the meal and she always did the same thing. I think it helps to keep the meat moist, but I have never asked her why she did it.” The daughter kept on working, but she was not completely satisfied with the answer. A few moments later, the girl’s grandmother came in the door, and she asked her the same question: “Why do we always cut the ends off the roast we cook for Christmas dinner?” “Well,” replied the grandmother, “I have no idea why your mother does it, but I did it because I didn’t have a pan big enough to fit the roast into without doing it.”
There’s a moral to this story. Sometimes, you just have to ask “Why?” This mother had gone years doing this tradition of cutting off the ends of meat, but she had never asked her mother why she did it. As a result, she had wasted the ends of her roast for years. So, this morning, I want to ask the question why. Why Christmas? Why did God choose to come in this way? I think we can get the answer to this by turning to John 3:1-17. Please read along with me in your Bible or in your sermon notes.
Now there was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a member of the Jewish ruling council. He came to Jesus at night and said, “Rabbi, we know you are a teacher who has come from God. For no one could perform the miraculous signs you are doing if God were not with him.” In reply Jesus declared, “I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again.” “How can a man be born when he is old?” Nicodemus asked. “Surely he cannot enter a second time into his mother’s womb to be born!” Jesus answered, “I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit. Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit. You should not be surprised at my saying, ‘You must be born again.’ The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit.” “How can this be?” Nicodemus asked. “You are Israel’s teacher,” said Jesus, “and do you not understand these things? I tell you the truth, we speak of what we know, and we testify to what we have seen, but still you people do not accept our testimony. I have spoken to you of earthly things and you do not believe; how then will you believe if I speak of heavenly things? No one has ever gone into heaven except the one who came from heaven – the Son of Man. Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the desert, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, that everyone who believes in him may have eternal life. For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.